Michael Johnson Associate Editor
April 20, 2007
At home on the show field, Jonathan's GT boasts Laser Red paint and benefits from an '03 Cobra front bumper cover, a Kaenen 3-inch cowl hood, and a 4.6 grille emblem. Going for the path not taken by many 'Stang Bangers, Jonathan added Centerline Telstars in big and little fashion with Mickey Thompson E/T Streets out back.

Horse Sense: Jonathan Pavia is a quality monitor for Rockwell Collins, headquartered in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He works at the location in his hometown of Melbourne, Florida.

In Florida, we have several entertainment venues competing for our time and, more importantly, our money. No matter what part of Florida one resides, the beach is no more than two hours away. In Orlando, there's Disney World, Wet n' Wild, Sea World, and so on. In Tampa, there's Busch Gardens, Adventure Island, Channelside, Ybor City, and more. South Florida has Miami, South Beach, and a completely different cultural blend. We have championship-winning college and professional teams from Tallahassee to Miami. As Floridians, we have so much entertainment at our disposal, going to the dragstrip doesn't usually rank at the top of many people's destinations-especially in the summer.

But go to any quarter-mile dragstrip in Florida on a test 'n' tune, and you'll see we still make time for racing. If you've visited Orlando Speedworld or Bradenton Motorsports Park, you've probably seen Jonathan Pavia with his '04 Mustang GT. If not, you can see it here.

"I purchased my car brand-new in 2002 from Kelly Ford in Melbourne," Jonathan says. "I went to work with performance upgrades on day one." Like many Mustangs, Jonathan's had nitrous relatively quickly, which led him to the dragstrip with Mustang and LS1 friends. Even though we're fairly sure nitrous installation voided the factory warranty, once it was up, Jonathan added a pair of Total Engine Airflow Stage 2-ported PI heads with what Jonathan refers to as "out of this world" VT Competition Engines' Stage 2 camshafts. With the improved intake capacity, Jonathan knew the bottleneck would be the exhaust, so he swapped out the stock stuff in exchange for Flowtech long-tube headers with the corresponding X-shape crossover and finished with a pair of Flowmaster mufflers.

For those of you wanting to add long-tube headers to your '99-or-newer Mustang GT, Jonathan would like to thank Rick Crane for the use of his lift. Rick's lift allowed Jonathan enough room to drop his K-member, making it easier to install the long-tube headers. The work was worth it. "I wish there was a way to put a sound clip in this article so readers can hear this combo themselves," Jonathan says. Trust us-we heard it and can vouch for its demonic demeanor.

Speaking of seeing this combo in person, Jonathan tries to make it to the dragstrip as much as possible in the winter. We know it's the opposite up north, but while northerners are digging out of the snow, we Floridians are at the track. The winter is the best because one bad aspect of Florida is that it rains nearly every summer afternoon, making trips to the track worthless unless it's a RunDay Sunday at Bradenton.

Even though Jonathan's main source of enjoyment comes from racing, his car is just as much at home on the show field or at the local cruise-in, and he has the trophies to prove it. From a Most Improved Driver award at Bradenton Motorsports Park to a People's Choice trophy at the Fun Ford Weekend Orlando event, Jonathan makes time to enjoy his Mustang.